During French President Emmanuel Macron’s visit to Serbia on July 15-16, the two countries signed several contracts, memoranda, and agreements on cooperation in the waste sector, the construction of wind farms, geothermal energy utilization, and electricity transmission.
Beo Čista Energija and public heating utility Beogradske Elektrane signed a 25-year contract on the purchase of heat from the Vinča waste-to-energy facility. The facility is part of a 25-year public-private partnership (PPP) for the closure and remediation of the Vinča landfill and the construction of a waste-to-energy cogeneration facility to produce heat and electricity, signed in September 2017.
The PPP contract was signed between the City of Belgrade and a Suez-Itochu consortium. A public debate on Belgrade’s waste incinerator and the new landfill in Vinča will be held on July 23 in Grocka.
According to a press release from Suez Groupe, the energy-from-waste facility will produce up to 30 MW of electricity, plus 56 MW of heat to be purchased by Beogradske Elektrane, which will reduce the natural gas consumption of its Konjarnik plant by 80% during the cold season, and will contribute to reducing reliance on fossil fuels.
MoUs on the Bašaid wind farm
Akuo Energy SAS, IEL OIE Balkan Renewable Energy, and the Secretariat for Energy, Construction, and Transport of the Serbian province of Vojvodina signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on the development of a wind farm in Serbia, in the presence of representatives of Belgrade-based Basaid Wind.
Another MoU was signed between Proparco, a subsidiary of the French Development Agency (AFD), and Akuo Energy SAS, on financing for the Bašaid wind farm. According to Akuo Energy’s Twitter account, the installed capacity of the wind farm will be 85 MW.
The construction of the Bašaid wind farm was announced for 2015 near Kikinda in Vojvodina. The installed capacity back then was planned at 50 MW, with a EUR 70 million investment. Akuo Energy SAS is already active in the region. It has built the first Montenegrin wind farm, Krnovo, and next year it will start the construction of the Gvozd wind farm, also in Montenegro.
Cooperation in the geothermal energy sector
An MoU was also signed between the Government of the province of Vojvodina and French geothermal association AFPG.
The MoU covers cooperation between the Vojvodina government and the AFPG in order to promote deep geothermal energy as an instrument to combat global warming and transition to a low-carbon economy, the Vojvodina government said in a press release.
France has more than 50 geothermal power plants in its territory, supplying district heating networks with almost a million consumers.
The GOSPEL project (Geothermal Serbian Pilot projects for Heat and Electricity) is being implemented in Serbia, financed mostly by the French Ministry of Economy and Finance, and supported by the Vojvodina government.
A study conducted as part of the project identified 4 feasible industrial projects for deep geothermal energy in Serbia, including Subotica, Kikinda, and Sremska Mitrovica – Ruma. These projects are intended for heat production for the supply of district heating networks in cities or industrial zones, and for the production of electricity.
The estimated installed capacities of geothermal power plants are between 11 MWh and 17 MWh, which corresponds to a total investment of EUR 7 million to EUR 18 million, the Vojvodina government said.
Schneider Electric to offer scholarships
During Macron’s visit, Schneider Electric signed a cooperation agreement with the Faculty of Technical Sciences in Novi Sad and the University of Belgrade School of Electrical Engineering (ETF), to provide support for the most talented students during studies.
“Schneider Electric’s scholarships will provide a significant contribution to gaining practical knowledge, as well as financial assistance during studies. Work on various projects and potential recruitment by Schneider Electric DMS NS (SEDMS NS) after graduation are additional advantages of the scholarship program,” the company said in a press release.
An MoU was also signed between the French and Serbian electricity transmission system operators, RTE and Elektromreža Srbije (EMS).
Veolia and public utility Beogradski Vodovod i Kanalizacija signed MoU on the construction of the first wastewater treatment plant in Belgrade.